July 11-16 2001Table of Contents
July 11th - 12th. Heather Henricks house in Seattle.
Today was a a recovery day. I got to sleep in. I woke up, and cleaned my car out. I was ecstatic to look on one of Heatherís recycle binís and see that Seattle is very progressive with their Recycling policy. They recycled everything. Plastic Bags, food containers, paper, magazines, etc. It was awesome.
I washed my plastic bags out that I was going to throw away, and got to recycle them. I washed out the old Hummus, and Potato salad containers out, and recycled them too. I also recycled all the paper that each campsite / national park / tourist attraction gave me along the way. It really felt good. I had smiles most of the rest of the day because of this.
Earlier I looked for a place for breakfast on the block a couple streets away from Heathers. I found a place called "The Pie Shack", which Heather told me later is famous. The door read "Breakfast all day long" Ė It was around 10:00AM on a Wednesday, and they were closed.
I found a coffee shop, Maggie mayís or something, (Not starbucks), and had a nice chat with the hostess, and read one of the alternative magazines on the counter. It was an article about how Hollywood portrayes African Americanís in the movies. It said they are very smart and knowledgeable, but not enough to improve their own lives. It used Shrek, and The legend of Baggar Vance as evidence. I saw the point.
Later I saw the point in the Movie "Oh Brother where art thou" also. The same thing happened. An old black man that spent his life on a push train prophesized about the future of our three heros, but he was poor and blind. Ė Hmm.
I watched this movie while I was trying to get Heatherís Cable modem to work on my laptop. I think I had to have some kind of client software, because I noticed that the link lights were up, and the laptop was chatting with the cable modem, but it wasnít connecting. So, I used the modem.
Heather came home, and we talked about going to a place to get dinner, and drinks to meet her sailing friend. I had my stuff packed up, but wasnít ready to leave right away. She asked if I could just bring it, and she could drop me off at the Airport after dinner. I agreed, and rushed to get my stuff together.
We went to a shi shi place, and sat on the veranda, and watched the boats go to and fro on the lock. It was neat. Steve was cool. I could tell that he really loved his boat, and sailing, because when he talked about it, I could hear the passion in his voice, and see it in his eyes. I like it when people are passionate about what they are interested in. It makes me feel like things are right in this world. Steve more about sailing than anyone I had ever met.
I was super psyched to hear that he wanted to bring Heather sailing, and that I could come along on Wednesday when I returned. I am very excited thinking about it now. Steve lives on his boat in the marina. He pays 200 dollars a year in dock fees, and has little maintenance fees on his boat. I asked him about a boat I saw in the water, and he told me how long it was, and what the model was, and who the designer was. I was impressed.
I think everyone should be this excited about what they do. I just hope that I find out what I am excited to do in the next few years. Maybe I should start trying to do internships with people to try and find out about their jobs. Hmm. Good thought for later.
After dinner, Heather drove me to the airport. My flight was at 1:00AM, and I got there around 10:00PM. This was good, because I could type for a bit. I talked with a fun woman who worked at the Jet Blue counter. She was very attractive. I have her e-mail, and will drop her a line this weekend. Maybe we can get together when I go back to Seattle.
I love people, I love talking and getting to know people. They are so interesting.
So, then I got on the flight, and took the red Ė eye back to Rochester. I sat down next to Paula on the plane, and had a nice chat with her. She was going to move back to Seattle from NYC, and was nervous about it. She had been living in the city for a long time, and had gotten very used to the conviences of it. She was married to a man who was 11 years older than her, and had two children.
He wanted to move back to Seattle for her, because there was a history of heart disease in his family, and he was concerned for her, if something should happen to him, being on the East Coast with no family. And little support structures. She was a lot of fun, and poked me and made jokes along the way.
The rest of the flight, I slept little. There was a man snoring like a buzzsaw behind me. When I got in to Rochester, I called Doug. He couldnít pick me up. I took a cab back to the place. I looked through my mail, and made some calls to iron things out. I also walked Trinity. She was happy, but normal to see me. I coordinated with Todd and Joe who were at the house about where to meet, and what to do. I wasnít so psyched about this, because I had just gotten off the plane, and hoped to be able to just be there, and let the other folks take care of things. But, no. I had to coordinate and make calls, and make sure that we would make it where we were supposed to when we were supposed to.
I called and confirmed our reservations at the hotel. I called and confirmed directions to the castle, where we were supposed to be for the rehersal. I had enough time to go through my mail, and got annoyed at a couple bills that I got. I called my insurance company, then Verizon wireless, then the company I purchased my camcorder through. Each of them had unique issues that had to be resolved. I thankfully had enough time to resolve each of them. However, Doug got home from work at 4:00, and we had to leave directly. We had to be at the castle at 6:00, and we still had to pick up our tuxedos at Peggys Bridal, in Victor.
I got Trinityís cage packed, since we were bringing her to the wedding. (Dogís were allowed in the hotel.) So, Trin was going to stay with us. I got her food ready, and packed myself, so we could jam as soon as Doug got home. He and I didnít talk too much on the way to the rehearsal, because I was so beat. I napped a little on the way too.
Originally, we were going to just go straight to the rehearsal, but as it turned out, we had enough time to check into the hotel, and meet some other folks who hadnít left either. The castle was cool. It was right on the lake. There were nice trees in the yard, that provided a little shade. There was ivy all over the castle, which made it look old and weathered. Inside was primarily wood, which I was kind of disappointed by. My image of castles is of rock and stone. The inside of this one was wood, which made it seem a little less castley. I forgave it though.
We had a few beers while we were chatting with people, and I made a doh-doh move, and when someone was asking me about what I could do with my camera, I turned the camera and beer that I had in the same hand towards my chest, and poured the beer down the front of my shirt. I was tired. It was still Thursday. I think many of the folks there thought I was poop faced, (Eyeís were red, spilling on my shirt, etc.) but I was just over tired.
The rehearsal went smoothly. Everyone knew who was running the show (Amy). As she pointed, and gave looks to people who got in her way.
After the dinner, Joe and Amy introduced their respective Bridal Party. Both Amy and Joe were extremely articulate and eloquent in their respective speeches. Amy introduced each one of her girls, and afterwards, Joe said something like "My parents instilled value, moral character, and taught me to associate with people who had these high standards themselves." Ė "These five men you see before youÖ(Referring to his ushers, myself included) Have none of these qualities." Ė It was funny, and a great ice breaker for the room full of guests.
I am pretty sure that Joe had "Something in his Eye", towards the end of his speech. Ė All the girls got little baskets of stuff. All the guys got cool folding chairs. I got a crazy creek chair, which is great for my camping needs. It is cool, compact, and comfortable.
July 13-16th, 2001 Rochester, NY
This weekend has not been relaxing. It has been anything but.
So, The night after the rehearsal I slept in. My legs were still sore from Climbing Mt. Rainier earlier in the week. Iím sure a lot of people the night before mistook that for being tipsy. I was really just extremely tired and sore. I woke up when Doug and Joe came back to the room with the Dogs. They had walked into town, and gotten breakfast at the "Lakefront Diner".
I was feeling quite hungry, so I got my laptop, and walked into town in search of the diner myself. I found it, and sat down for a meal. I kind of tried to type while I was eating, but that worked less than well. The funny thing about Diners, is that your food comes so fast, that you really donít have time to relax while you are in the Restaurant. I guess thatís why they call them diners, because you are mainly there to dine.
When I was walking around looking for the place, I asked someone on the street where a good Diner was. A 16 or 17 year old greasy haired, zit faced kid said "Well, the real only place to go for that is the "Lakefront Diner.", then he gave me directions. The funny thing was that while I was walking down the street for the diner, I passed three other diners along the way. Ė Joe and Doug had said that the Lakefront was good, so I kept going. When I got there, I happened to catch a quick glance in the kitchen, and I happened to see the kid I talked to on the street. Ė Now I understood his slightly biased recommendation.
I ate, then typed a little. There were some smokers in the place, and a noisy kid, so I decided I would walk back to the Hotel, and type in the lobby or something. Ė Thatís what I did. I got a little done, and then had to get upstairs to get ready for the pictures at 2:45 or so.
I got in the room with plenty of time to get ready. I was in the bathroom, and Doug asked me if I was going to get ready. Ė Apparently he needed to get ready too. I hadnít calculated two people getting ready, only myself. So I tried to pick it up a notch and go faster. In the end, we had plenty of time. We were waiting a good 20 minutes or so at the Castle for Dan to show up. He was just getting back from doing something with Helga, his girlfriend.
It was sunny out, and hot in the Tuxedo. I tried to spend time in the Shade, out of the direct sunlight. The weather was good for pictures though. The picture guy was kind of a slime Ė ball. I guess he knew Amy or something, and thatís how he got the job doing what he was doing. He at times, acted like he like he had extra privilege because he knew her or something. This was evident later in the evening at the reception where he was dancing more than taking pictures. I think Joe mentioned something to Todd, who put him in his place. I havenít seen the pictures, so I donít know how they came out.
After the menís pictures were done, myself and a couple other of the ushers saw our way to the Bar to get some refreshments. The bartender was no where in sight, so the hotel manager helped us out. Time passed, and eventually, the girls came down. Amy looked amazing. She had a long train, and a neat little hat and parasol to boot. The gents in the Party, sans Joe and Dave who were back at the Hotel, took pictures of the Women along with the hired gun. Some of the guests started to arrive. The pictures ended, and the girls retired to the Castle. Ė Castle and Hotel are one in the same in case you are wondering.
Todd got some great stuff on film. Amy and her sisters, "the brown women", all have amazing voices, and have each had professional singing experience. As they were walking back to the Castle, they all held hands with each other, and sang "Goiní to the Chapel". It sounded amazing, and of course Todd got it all on film. I high fived him after they were out of walking distance, and said "You got the Money Shot". He was pretty stoked too. He got another great moment later.
More guests arrived, and some of us started seating people. Ė I gave my video camera to Chrisí, who was in the Bridal party, boyfriend. I think his name was Steve or John or something. I showed him how to use it, and he got as much of the ceremony on tape as he could. The tape ran out, before the ceremony did. It was all bonus for me, because I had planned on getting the Rehearsal, and night one on video, and the wedding, and reception on camera. I didnít expect my Video Camera battery to last that long.
We then walked with our corresponding member of the Bridal party up to the front of the seats. I had my still camera inside my jacket. Earlier, the day before I asked Joe if it would be OK to take pictures of the ceremony, while we were standing. He said "Why not? Itís fine, as long as you are not distracting." So, I took little mpegs of them saying vows, and such. When the minister asked Amy if she would take Joe to be her lawfully wedded husband, she responded "Heís ALL MINE!" It got a good laugh from the audience. The only thing I had to do was turn off the "Beepís" that my camera made, because it was very quiet during the ceremony, and the beeping was kind of loud. I think I got some decent stuff though. My favorite picture was one I got the day earlier of Joe and Amy kissing. It was really close up, and just had each others head in the shot.
They were pronounced "Man and Wife", and then 5 minutes later, they stopped kissing. It was funny to see each of them during the ceremony. Joe just acted like he was a little kid. Kind of just happy and blissful. I think he was relaxed, and kind of just let everything happen. Amyís expression was like she was on the verge of winning the Lottery, bawling her eyes out, and on a photo shoot all at the same time. I know she was super excited though, and she did look stunning.
After the ceremony, all the guests kind of hung out on the lawn, and chatted. There was an open bar, and horsí díeouvers. Broccoli dip, yumm. I really enjoyed talking with Jeff Inman, and Darren Lowe. Each of those guys is really cool, and talking with them energizes me. Jeff is really open about his about whatís going on with his personal life. Ė Itís cool to hear that from people. He told me he was heading up to Canada for a while with his Girlfriend. Ė That sounded cool.
The reception was fun. Amy told us that there would be no electric slide, no chicken dance, no ymca, none of those songs that everyone knows, and getís on the floor for. I was glad of this. It was refreshing. The playlist was actually quite good. The DJ played "Ring of Fire", the cure, Moby, and a host of other great artists. I made people at our table try and guess the wedding song. I didnít make a guess, but thought it might be Van Morrison. It was Van Morrison, "Into the Mystic". I was disappointed that Tom didnít guess. I thought he could have.
Estrogen was certainly in the air. Three women at the wedding were pregnant. Joeís sister Pam, Tomís wife Debbie, and Daveís wife, whose name I canít remember. She showed the most, Debbie and Pam looked slim, even though they were both into their third trimesters.
They played a Bee Geeís tune, and all of the sudden I found myself surrounded by a large circle of people trying to disco. I hammed it up as much as I could, and then took as graceful an exit as I could. I donít even know how to disco. It was fun nonetheless.
Towards the end of the night, Doug and I were both enjoying talking with Megan, the only single women at the wedding. She was very nice, lived in Philadelphia, and was cousins with the Brown sisters. I think she said she worked as an Anti Ė Smoking advocate. I think in a school, or for a non Ė profit. I didnít get to talk with her at length, but I liked her. She was a great dancer, and smelled nice. I think Doug got her number though. She kind of left for bed before the night was over, much to our chagrin. Other people to depart early were Jeff, Darren, and their significant others. Joe was bummed Jeff missed the Johnny Cash song.
The pinnacle of the wedding for me was towards the end of the night. The DJ was about to play the last song, and Amy took the microphone to say a few words. "I just want to thank you all for coming, we feel very touched, and blessed by your presence." Ė Then shouts from the Audience "Sing", "Sing a song", "Yea, come on." Ė I donít know if she planned it or not, my gut instinct from looking at her face, was that she didnít, but she pulled it off so perfectly that I almost think it must have been planned.
Joe was across the dance floor, and Amy sang a song directly at him. The crowd had formed a makeshift circle around them, on the edge of the floor. With each phrase of the song, she took a step closer to him. I donít even know what she sang. I think it was an older song, but it didnít even matter. She sounded majestic.
There was no music at all, it was just her singing acapella. It was such a great contrast to the loud thundering music that the audience had heard all evening that it really couldnít have been any more perfect. The audience made no noise whatsoever, I mean throughout the song, when there was a pause, or Amy just took a quick little breather, it seemed like you could hear a pin drop. The energy in the room was electric. I felt the hairs on the back of my neck, and my arms stand on end. I got chills like a cool breeze washed over me. The rest of the audience felt the same. Everyone in the place was looking at Amy, and Amy was looking at Joe.
Towards the end, it was like a major sporting event with the singing of the national anthem, but at the same time, the moment was much softer, and I think it was OK. People started cheering before she was finished, and then when they finally embraced, and kissed, the crowd went wild. For me, that was definitely the highlight of the evening. Iím not sure what the final song was, but it paled in comparison to Amyís.
Forgot to mention. The guy who I had working my camera proposed to Chris, his long time girlfriend who was in Amyís bridal party. Doug and I got it on tape. He did it on the Castle Lawn in front of the lake. It was romantic, moreso, since they didnít know we were taping it. I havenít looked at the footage yet. Doug had a better long term infrared light, so he probably got it better.
With Helga driving, we made our way back to the Hotel. We went down to the Hotel Bar, and hung out a little bit. I talked with one of the locals a little about digital cameraís, and he showed me his Polaroid, which could hold like 400 pictures. It was cool, but not as cool as mine.
I also talked with the only Amish guy at the wedding. Amy knew them from similar work experiences. He was like the total anti Ė amish guy. He carried a pager, and cell phone, and had an e-mail address. I took a picture of him talking on his phone. I donít know if that was uncouth, or maybe a little rude of me, but I did it anyway. We talked a little at the wedding about putting up the pictures of Joe and Amyís wedding. Todd and Doug also expressed interest in doing it.
I told them, that once they decided on a domain name, I would host the site. I donít have time though to put up the content. I left that up to them. I donít know if they are doing that though, because I havenít heard from them. I might do a little page myself, just since I am already doing a similar thing for my web page.
Then Toddís parents hosted a little after hours party in their room. Somehow, a pizza / wing place was open, and we ordered food. I regretted it the next day. Wings are great on the way inÖ You know where I am going. I then made it back to my room, and took a nice long sleep.
Saturday, July 14, 2001 Ė Ramada inn Geneva.
The next morning, I woke up a little sleepy, but none the worse for wear. Then I decided that I would like to talk more with Megan. So, I went down to the lobby on the off chance of meeting her. The night before, she said that she was going to the Castle for breakfast at 11:00. I figured that she would have to walk through the lobby to the parking lot. Ė But, I didnít see her. Time passed, I read about Alaska in a tour book I had, and some other folks from the wedding went to breakfast in the hotel restaurant. I didnít see Megan, so I left her a note with my e-mail.
Then Doug came down, and we got packed up, to go back to Rochester. We said goodbye to people like 10 times before we started driving, but eventually got on the road. Ė The drive back was uneventful. We missed the exit to return the tuxís, because they were doing construction on the 490 E. exit where it was.
After we returned the tuxís, we went to Wendys hot and crappy, for a little lunch. It bothers me how much stuff that fast food places throw out each day. There has got to be a better way to manage your waste.
Then we got back to Bay Village, and I hit the sack for a few hours. I woke up, and we decided to make some dinner at our place for Reggie, Pete, Allison, Todd, and Erin. I attempted to duplicate Joeís recipe for chicken vegetables, but it didnít come out as good as I thought it would. It was kind of too much oil + dressing on the veggies. Everyone said they liked it, but I think mostly they were just being nice.
Allison had to leave to meet her friends at the Blue Room. We said that we would meet her there later. We played some foose, and got ready. Andrea showed up a little later, and that complicated the decision on where to go. We wanted her to hang with us, but she wasnít comfortable. Pete and Reg called to say that they werenít going out. Pete had a headacheís that made him feel like bullcrap.
We decided to go on the boat and skip the Blue Room, but then I changed my mind, because I wanted to see Allison and Sarah. The blue room was empty, but there was a line to get in, because the fire marshal had put a limit of like 80 people on the place. It could easily hold a couple hundred. Ė I got the inside scoop from Allison that since the Mayor spent so much money on the High Falls rehabilitation project, that he was leaning a little heavily, as far as rules and regulations, on the bars in the Alexander Street Area, that had become popular lately. I think the whole thing has to do with vision. Short term vs. long term. The mayor has long term, and the bars on Alexander Street have short term.
So I had a drink or two, and made my way down to the dart board. There were a couple women who were playing, that I talked with a little bit. I got the oneís phone number, but when I called her the next day, I think I gave her the wrong call back number. I was too tired to hang anyway.
We saw Allison there, and she promised that she would make it to Darien Lake the next day. Ė She didnít. I was major bummed she didnít.
July 15th, Sunday Rochester, NY
Doug, Reggie, Pete, Andrea, and I went to Darien Lake for the day. It was a good time. It was nice, but not too warm out. It was totally cold after going on Grizzley Run, and getting soaked. We dried out quick, and things were ok. My favorite ride was of course the Superman. It is Darien Lakeís newest Roller Coaster, and it goes very fast and furious.
The Predator was closed. That is their Wooden Roller Coaster. It is a little on scary side. In the last car, you get shaken around like crazy. The first time I rode it, I thought I was going to fall off and die. It was fun nonetheless.
Andrea and I wanted to do the large swing thing, but we got there too late to do it. There were only reservations for like 9:00PM, and I definitely didnít want to wait that long to do it. We played a couple games, Reggie and Andrea won all sorts of toy stuffed animals. They each had like 5 or 6 of them. We played the ring toss, which was a total load of crap. We did the bumper cars, and most of the Roller Coasters too. Pete totally broadsided me in the bumper car. Reggie said I was sitting straight up, and then all of the sudden I wasnít. The hit kind of hurt my knee, but I didnít say anything about it. We also tried to do the Jacobís ladder thing. That was tough. If I had an hour to practice it, I think I could get it. Three shots, and I couldnít connect on a one.
The lines werenít too bad. Superman was a good 45 minute wait though. The other lines were much shorter. There was Whiskey Tango everywhere in the Park. I said to Pete and Reg "I wonder if the people that have tooth decay so bad, that they are asked for pictures of it for documentation purposes, get free dental work?" I saw a couple folks that needed it badly. I didnít see any pregnant teens with a cigarette in one hand, and a beer in the other. I was happy about that. Ė I did see it the last time I was in the Park, and that just depressed me.
Doug, Pete, and Reggie stayed on to see Fuel, and Aerosmith. They had lawn seats, and were treated to a show, when Aerosmith came out, and sang on a little stage that was right in front of them. They did 5 or 6 songs up front, and then 5 or 6 songs on the back stage. Doug said they were like 15 feet away from them. Andrea and I drove Dougís truck back, after we said goodbye to them. We first went back in the park, ate some food, and rode Superman again.
Andrea talked my ear off most of the time back in the park. Iím more talkative when there is a smaller group of people, or more one on one. But, there wasnít really a lot of room during our conversations. Anyway, after superman, we headed back out to the cars. The ride back wasnít too long, and when we got back, she wanted to watch Sex in the City. We watched that. I walked Trinity too. She was happy to see me, but didnít act like she hadnít seen me in a long time. She is mellowing with age.
I then did some bill paying and such, and went to bed around 11:00PM or so.
July 16th, Monday 2001.
I had some errands to run, and was very busy all day. In the morning, I balanced both my checkbooks, and paid bills. That took several hours. Doug came home for lunch, and said that I could borrow his car to run errands during the day. He also asked me to get a copy of the house key made, and pick him up a shirt at E.M.S.
After dropping Doug off back at work, I met Pete and Reg for lunch in Henrietta. We went to Dibellas. Then I headed over to EMS. They didnít have any more of the shirts I wanted, so I ended up buying a patagonia tee shirt which I love. (I have since bought more)
I got Dougís housekey made, which incidentally doesnít work. (I knew the woman making them didnít know what she was doing.) I got Doug a large tank like mine, but I like the Medium size. I also bought some Capaline underwear. Then I headed to the Docís to get the second round of my Hep B vaccination (Docís recommendation for traveling through B.C. and into Alaska). Then back home, and out again to get some copies made.
I got back, and started packing my things up for the flight back to Seattle. Ė I had about 5 minutes before Doug called me to pick him up at work. I didnít have any time to work on the web site, and was still about a week behind on my journal entries. I only had enough time to transfer all the photos I had taken to my computer, to make a backup copy of them. I was a little annoyed about that. It would have been cool to take another day, just to work on that stuff.
Then Doug took me to the airport, and dropped me off. Jet Blue boards like 45 minutes before the flight leaves. So, my flight was at 7:20, and they started boarding at 6:40. Allison and Sarah met me at the gate, and saw me off. Allison got a little somethiní in her eye.
I relaxed on the flight to JFK from ROC, but on the flight back to Seattle, I pretty much typed until both my batteries were dead. Then I tried to get a little sleep, and kind of watched a little TV.
Back in Seattle, Coralee, the girl who I met on the way out, was working the boarding gate. I said hi, and we chatted a little. I was still beat from my trip, and not feeling too eloquent. She said "I got your e-mail", to which I responded, "So do you feel like getting together in the next couple days?" Ė She kind of opened her eyes a little wider, and grinned slightly, and said "Yea", like it was a tough but exciting choice. She gave me her phone number, and I told her I would call her tomorrow. I was happy that she agreed to hang out, and hoped that we would have a good time.
Then I took a cab back to Heatherís place, keyed in, and went to bed.